The Sidney Sun-Telegraph - Serving proudly since 1873 as the beautiful Nebraska Panhandle's first newspaper

By Nancy Frecks
Nebraska Extension Educator 

UNL FOR FAMILIES: Medicare Open Enrollment

 

November 24, 2021 | View PDF



Medicare-eligible Nebraskans still have time to review their Medicare Part D Prescription Drug plans through Dec. 7. Also, anyone eligible for Part D but not yet signed up for a drug plan can do so until Dec. 7.

Every year beneficiaries need to check their plan to make sure it is still the best plan for their needs. Plans can change every year, so just because you like how the plan you are on now works doesn’t mean it will work the same next year.

It is important to make sure your current plan covers the medications you are currently taking. The plans can change the medications they cover and the level at which they are covered every year. There are 22 plans offered in Nebraska for 2022 with premiums ranging from $6.80 to $116.10 per month.

Different plans cover different medications; the lowest premium isn’t always the best. Deductibles will range from $0 to $480. The deductible on many plans doesn’t apply to generic medicines. But again, each plan is different.

It takes about 30 minutes to review your plan. You need your Medicare card and the list of your medications, including the dose and strength of each. Beneficiaries can go to http://www.medicare.gov and use the plan finder to determine their best plan. Or call the Nebraska SHIP (State Health Insurance Program) toll-free hotline at 800-234-7119 to find a trained volunteer in your area to help you through the process. Or call Medicare directly at 800-MEDICARE and they will help find the best plan.

The option of using your online Medicare account for your personalized comparison review, is available and is recommended for the best results. It is very simple to set up a Medicare account at http://www.medicare.gov.

The Senior Savings Model is available in 2022 for plans that choose to participate. Participating plans have agreed to charge NO MORE than $35 for a one-month supply of select insulins. Plans do not have to cover the same insulins, so it is very important review the plans to enroll in a plan that covers the insulin brand that is needed.

Medicare and Nebraska SHIP provide free, unbiased counseling. To get one-on-one help from the Nebraska State Health Insurance Program call the SHIP toll-free hotline at 800-234-7119 to make an appointment in your area; or visit http://www.medicare.gov; or call 800-MEDICARE (800-633-4227) 24 hours a day, seven days a week to find out more about your coverage options. TTY users should call 877-486-2048.

Remember, plans change, and your medications change it is important to take the time and review your Medicare Part D plan each year between October 15 and Dec. 7.

 

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